The U.S. Marine Corps: The most Respected & Revered Fighting Force on Earth

Last week I flew to the west coast to attend a Marine graduation. Before that occasion, I knew little to nothing about the military. You know when you read something but your eyes just skim without making a connection?

From now on, the word Marine will forever stop me in my tracks.

Family

What I learned about honor, courage, and commitment in two days made me hold my own shoulders back, put my chest out a bit, and walk taller. We could all learn from these Leather Necks. These Devil Dogs. These Marines with a capital M. (more…)

When You Feel as if You’ve Lost Your Way

I’m experiencing a pervasive inadequacy. This was the second line I wrote in an SOS email to a friend.

Are professionals supposed to confess stuff like this on a public blog? It’s risky, my ego tells me, but I feel I’m also risking something more dangerous if I don’t­–a belief that when looking at the life of someone else, it always appears good, or at the very least, somehow better than yours. (more…)

A Square Peg in a Round Hole

“Because, Rachel, we’ve always done it this way.” This was the response I received recently after asking why an organization wouldn’t consider a new useful and efficient idea.

“If we let one person do it, then we’d have to let everyone do it.”

This rebuttal created instant relief in my mind: Awesome! If everyone was allowed to do this, they would save so much time!

But the door was shut and dead-bolted on the idea, and the-way-we-always-do-things prevailed.

At first I experienced frustration (a win-win isn’t going to be considered), then sadness (you’re pushing the envelope again, Rach, and not making any friends), then an insight (omg! This has been happening your whole life!).

I began to wonder how many square pegs, like me, have been trying to fit into round holes. (more…)

The Awkward Stage Between Birth and Death

Humanity takes stiff-legged wobbly steps in the form of fleshy bodies and falls, scrapes its knees, gets back up, and keeps exploring.

Nobody has life figured out.

The most influential leaders in history were closest as they pointed in the direction of love, compassion and forgiveness and opened the eyes of humanity to the dignity of one other.

But as soon as they draw us closer together, we pull ourselves apart. (more…)

Leading through the Ordinary

I haven’t felt inspired in a few weeks. Very little has moved me to greater effort, enthusiasm or creativity. A particular feeling hasn’t been awakened thats led to productive insight lately. Things have felt…ordinary.

So I didn’t write.

A subtle pressure slowly began building to produce meaningful and profound output. I didn’t feel on the cusp of any wow-factor material, and I didn’t want to sound like everybody else.

So I didn’t write. (more…)